Saturday, January 23, 2010

First Day in Jerusalem

Posted by Colleen

(NOTE, the blog is best read from the blog site directly, instead of the email notification. If you’re reading this from the email notification, you can jump directly to this blog entry by clicking on the Blog Title link -- “First Day in Jerusalem” – above.)

DSC_0009 We spent our first day in Old City. The walk was about 30 minutes. We stopped at a quaint coffee shop for lunch on the way.  There’s a really sheik (high-end, expensive) mall that we walked through which comes out at this spectacular view overlooking the gate to the Old City and the surrounding hillside.



 Celine snaps a shot of the hillside right outside the Jaffa Gate.








 The Jaffa Gate is under construction.








DSC_0045It was great to be there on Friday because the priests lead a procession of pilgrims through the streets of Old City visiting the 14 Stations of the Cross. What are the 14 Stations? 1. Jesus is condemned to death, 2.   Jesus recieves the cross, 3. Jesus falls for the 1st time, 4. Jesus meets his mother, 5. Simon helps Jesus carry the cross, 6. DSC_0049Veronica wipes Jesus’ face, 7. Jesus falls the 2nd time, 8. Jesus consoles women of Jerusalem, 9. Jesus falls for the 3rd time, 10. Jesus stripped of his garments, 11. Jesus is nailed to the cross, 12. Jesus dies on the cross, 13. Jesus taken down and given to Mary, 14. Jesus is laid in chamber of the sepulcher and from there is resurrected.   


Church of the Holy SepulchreThe procession ends here at the  Church of the Holy Sepulchre.








SepulchreThe Supposed Sepulchre (tomb) of Christ within the Church so-named.

Keep in mind that this procession takes place in the Muslim Quarter as well as the others. Parts of the walk were more interesting than others but over all, it was stunning and quite impressive that it is repeated weekly with the same passion. I was standing by nuns who were clearly moved by each station. I found myself asking the Lord to draw me closer to Him that I too may be moved as they are. Another thought I had was that, as beautiful as the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is, do we make the mistake of worshipping the shrine more than the man? That is something each individual has to ask themselves, I guess.

Our plan was to return before the markets closed to get some groceries for today and tomorrow but we lingered too long and found the market nearest our home closed. We knew that everything was going to shut down early because Shabbat (Sabbath) would begin at sundown which is around 3-4pm and last till Saturday about the same time. If you are impressed with Hobby Lobby and Chick-fil-A closing on Sundays in America, you would have been overwhelmed by the closing of everything here in Jerusalem. The exception is East Jerusalem where the Arabs run things. Anyway, our dinner last night consisted of Fiber One bars and for dessert a mini Snickers (part of our stash to get us to Israel). We went to bed very late and woke up today so late, I was reminded that our bodies are not quite acclimated to the new time zone. 


Increased safety factor, Soldiers with Guns.







IMG_0720 Speaking of sleep, Lillian fell sound asleep during our 14 station pilgrimage. 

Celine woke up sick today. We think it may be a bug so hopefully by tomorrow she will be back to her energetic, bubbly self.

Shabbat has ended and Eric and Tally have gone for groceries. Our accidental fast will end when they return. : ) Lillian has been that person you see in movies who steals the last morsel of food when they are rationing their last cracker/piece of gum/candy bar scenario. It has been hysterical. She has no idea of our plan to save.  Tally found a bag of pistachios in her backpack… Lillian was all over that. Don’t fret, we aren’t starving just spoiled by a culture that has a fast-food restaurant on every corner. BTW: We have yet to see a McDonalds or Burger King.



Eric Dean said...

Thanks for the photos and stories - we're praying that this will be an incredibly meaningful time for your family - and that we'll learn along the way with you. Love, the Deans

Beth said...

What a fun adventure! I've replied to your other post via emails. I'm wondering if you are able to retrieve them. I can't wait to hear how you'll end your "fast". Good ole Lillian - the survivor!LOL I hope Celine gets to feeling better once she eats some fresh food and some protein. Is there a large Catholic representation there in Jerusalem? I love hearing from ya'll...

Eric Robishaw said...

Large catholic presence ... no, actually outside the old city you rarely see anyone but Jewish people and some Arabs. Only in the Old City do you see otherwise, which is divided into 4 "quarters", two of which are "Christian" (particularly, 1)Muslim, 2)Christian, 3)Armenian, 4)Jewish).

I'll post a brief history lesson at some point.

Angela said...

This is amazing! So cool, and I am so excited to be able to read your blog to see what you guys are seeing!!

Beth said...

OK...I just read your response to this post. I'm looking forward to your History lesson (s). = ) I asked about the Catholic presense because of the priests leading the walk that Jesus took and one of the stops being where Veronica gave him some water. I had never heard of that until "The Passion of Christ" movie and was told that's part of the Catholic tradition.